Stratom developing first-of-its-kind remote-operated, lightweight, airworthy cargo loader for USSOCOM

The lightweight material-handling vehicle will occupy one 463L pallet position and rapidly deploy to load, unload and transport C-130 aircraft cargo in austere environments

BOULDER, Colo., May 21, 2024 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Stratom today announced its participation in a Small Business Innovation Research Phase I project with the United States Special Operations Command and SOFWERX to develop a unique small-form-factor material handling system capable of lifting, loading, unloading and transporting palletized 463L tactical cargo across various operating environments and terrains.

Expanding the Stratom family of material-movement solutions, this compact, remote-operated vehicle will be an industry-leading sub-10,000-pound airworthy system that occupies just one pallet position while excelling at all cargo loading and unloading tasks for full-sized, fully loaded 463L pallets in a variety of challenging conditions and locations.

“Building upon our prior expertise and knowledge in expeditionary robotic material handling, we’re helping define the appropriate tradeoffs of size, weight, capability and price to ensure our design is a strong fit for this application,” said Jesse Weifenbach, lead vehicle systems engineer at Stratom. “Integrating multiple proven technologies into a simplified, refined solution that streamlines USSOCOM and Air Force cargo operations and enhances warfighter safety, our innovative material-handling system will be lighter weight than traditional equipment, much quicker and efficient to deploy, and safer when unloading in undeveloped locations. These unique capabilities enhance cargo operations while reducing fuel waste and minimizing cycle times for military personnel.”

A leading developer of autonomous ground vehicles and robotic systems for logistics and operational applications, Stratom has developed several material-movement systems and solutions, including the following:

    • Summit™, Stratom’s highly configurable off-road modular autonomy platform, enabling customization for various container loader vehicle applications, including full automation of cargo operations for military aircraft.
    • eXpeditionary Robotic Platform (XRP), an autonomous vehicle capable of driving in and out of an MV-22 Osprey aircraft while carrying more than 2,400 pounds of supplies.
    • eXpeditionary Robotic-Field Artillery Autonomous Resupply (XR-FAAR), a vehicle that delivers ammunition and supplies to weapons systems.
    • SALT, the company’s small agile lift truck, which streamlines Air Force aerial stores and munition loading operations, increasing safety and enhancing adaptability.
    • Autonomous Pallet Loader (APL), Stratom’s flexible, autonomous forklift vehicle designed to transport heavy and bulky cargo across various terrains for both military and commercial use.

“Without proper material-handling equipment, alternate methods of combat cargo offloading consume significant time and are very labor intensive while posing serious risks to personnel, materials and the aircraft. Plus, the current equipment used can weigh up to three times its payload capacity and occupies precious space within an aircraft,” said Mark Gordon, president and CEO of Stratom. “The military is transitioning toward more agile combat employment in expeditionary environments and across large geographical footprints. Consequently, the need for inexpensive, lightweight and flight-ready material-handling equipment that is immediately operational upon landing is required as assets are distributed across a greater range of isolated locations without sufficient infrastructure.”

For more information about Stratom’s autonomous systems and solutions, please visit

About Stratom

Stratom is a global leader in the development of autonomous ground vehicles and robotic systems that solve the most pressing real-world logistics and operational challenges for commercial and defense applications. Specializing in autonomous cargo movement, robotic refueling, robotic hazardous liquid transfer and autonomous mobile robots (AMRs), the company’s military-proven tools, methods, technologies and strategic services solve the most difficult logistics and operational challenges. Whether in safe, controlled settings or dynamic and challenging terrain, Stratom provides unique solutions to meet each customer’s specific needs. With its extensive expertise in R&D, engineering and system integration of autonomous technologies and solutions, Stratom, a Service-Disabled Veteran Owned Small Business, is the go-to expert for global corporations, local businesses and government institutions. To learn more, visit Follow us on X and LinkedIn.



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